ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

As one Italian restaurant closes in Rochester, a new pizzeria opens

Fazoli's Italian Restaurant on the east frontage road of U.S. 52 North closed its doors recently. On the positive side of Rochester’s restaurant ledger, Carbone’s Pizzeria, a legendary name in pizza from St. Paul, opened a new Med City location at 2723 Commerce Drive NW on Jan. 1.

Heard Around Rochester - Jeff Kiger.png

ROCHESTER — When one door closes, another one opens.

Med City social media is abuzz this week with the recent closing of Fazoli's Italian Restaurant on the east frontage road of U.S. 52 North.

Signs on the 26-year-old fast food building state, “We regret to announce that Fazoli's in Rochester is permanently closed.”

While it looks like Fazoli's “unlimited breadsticks” have ended, there still might be life in that restaurant location.

Kentucky-based Fazoli’s built and opened in Rochester in 1996.

ADVERTISEMENT

Work crews were out there on Tuesday taking down signs. A new water heater was just installed less than a month ago. While it is unclear what the future of the building might be, the signs seem to indicate that something is cooking following the closure of Fazoli’s.

On the positive side of Rochester’s restaurant ledger, Carbone’s Pizzeria, a legendary name in pizza from St. Paul, opened a new Med City location at 2723 Commerce Drive NW on Jan. 1.

Also Read
Co-owners and chefs Nick Diaz and Kiefer Manning are on track to open a new Rochester eatery -- Our Paladar -- in the more than 120-year-old Chicago Great Western railroad depot at 20 Fourth St. SE.
A local developer recently purchased the rest of a downtown Rochester block for $4.5 million, after buying the other half in 2022 for a future hotel.
The Mess Hall, Rochester’s new “smash room,” will open its doors on Friday, Jan. 27, at 1635 North Broadway in the River Center Plaza. It is tucked in between Kingdom Buffet and the License Center.

Dan Howard and Scott LaMott opened the new pizzeria in the former Crooked Pint Ale House at 2723 Commerce Drive NW. LaMott owns the Carbone’s in Northfield, Minn.

Carbone’s has a long history in Minnesota, starting in 1954 in a small Italian grocery on St. Paul’s east side. It has grown to 36 locations in Minnesota and Wisconsin with one in Montana. This is the first time Carbone’s has cooked in the Rochester market.

The return of pizza to the Commerce Drive building is a return to its original focus. It was built in 2006 to house a Green Mill pizza restaurant. Green Mill abruptly closed at the start of 2015 and was replaced by the Crooked Pint.

Jeff Kiger tracks business action in Rochester and southeastern Minnesota every day in "Heard on the Street." Send tips to jkiger@postbulletin.com or via Twitter to @whereskiger . You can call him at 507-285-7798.

Heard Around Rochester - Jeff Kiger.png

Jeff Kiger writes a daily column, "Heard Around Rochester," in addition to writing articles about local businesses, Mayo Clinic, IBM, Hormel Foods, Crenlo and others. The opinions of my employer do not necessarily reflect my opinions. He has worked in Rochester for the Post Bulletin since 1999. Send tips to jkiger@postbulletin.com or via Twitter to @whereskiger . You can call him at 507-285-7798.
What To Read Next
Holly Masek took over the job during a time of hope and optimism. The pandemic changed things.
The Garden indoor skatepark is set to open in February, about six months after Adam and Laura Kramer bought the former Whiskey Bones building.
Being a restaurant inside a hotel comes with its challenges, but Saints on Second inside the Courtyard by Marriot across from Saint Marys has found a way around such challenges.
There are not as many supper clubs as there used to be in southeast Minnesota. One that has stood the test of time is the Branding Iron Supper Club in Preston.